The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) is in negotiations to renew their kit supply deal with sportswear manufacturers Nike with a deal expected to be announced in two weeks according to the President of the federation Amaju Pinnick.
Mr Pinnick speaking on a popular sports show Sports Zone on the Lagos based radio station Lagos Talks 91.3 FM, said the top brass of the federation including the 1st vice president Seyi Akinwumi, 2nd vice president Shehu Dikko and secretary general Mohammed Sanusi have been thrashing out the final details of the deal with Nike with a view to obtaining the best possible outcome for Nigeria.
“We are trying to renew our contract with Nike,” Pinnick told the programme. “We had a meeting then I put Seyi Akinwumi, Shehu Dikko and the general secretary online and we had a two-hour session with Nike in London.
“We are still brainstorming and within two weeks we are thinking of signing a new contract with Nike, so we are working religiously towards that.”
The previous $3.75m three and half year deal signed with the sportswear makers in 2015 will expire at the end of this year. Under the terms of that deal, Nike paid the NFF $750,000 in 2015 and a further $1m in each of the years between 2016 and 2018.
The previous deal covered the supply of performance and training kits to all nine of the NFF teams at every level including men’s and women’s senior teams, men’s and women’s U-20, U-17 and U-23 teams and the men’s beach soccer team.
While the partnership with Nike is a definite improvement on the horrible Adidas deal of the past and can be said to have been successful in part especially with the hugely popular Super Eagles 2018 World Cup jersey, it hasn’t been without its fair share of problems.
A lack of transparency as to the finer details of the deal has made it difficult to know where the blame lies for the chronic shortages and unavailability of match and training gear that has blighted the age-grade and female teams over the years.
The botched rollout of the Super Eagles world cup jersey was also another low point and the situation with the Super Falcons travelling for the final phase of their African Women Cup of Nations training camp bedecked in a motley collection of dance troupe attires was an embarrassment.
Hopefully, the new deal addresses the supply chain bottlenecks and delivers substance to match the undoubted sartorial brilliance of the kits.